Competition for land in Lesotho is increasing, resulting in impacts to land tenure security and access – which is already a complex system due to the multiple statutory and customary institutions within the regulatory environment. Women in particular are vulnerable to being excluded from customary inheritance laws, and are more likely to experience land grabbing, disinheritance, and dispossession. The Land Act of 2010 aimed to improve women’s access to land distribution as well as their ability to negotiate secure tenure, but implementation has been limited.
Habitat for Humanity Lesotho has conducted research, trained paralegals and officials on relevant legislation, and built public support through a variety of communication efforts. With partners ranging from the public to private sector, Habitat successfully formed a working group focused on issues of land tenure. Policy interventions have also been made, supporting the alignment of inheritance laws with the needs of women. A Land Dispute Resolution Authority has also been formed, addressing disputes related to inheritance issues and dispossession.
Habitat for Humanity International. (2021) Building Solid Ground. Habitat for Humanity International.